Greek Tragedy gets a post-millennial makeover in this electrifying re-imagining of the Sophocles classic, now relocated to an immigrant community in Montreal. 16-yr-old Antigone (Nahéma Ricci) arrived with her grandmother and two brothers from Algeria when she was small. Following a skirmish with police, her elder brother (Hakim Brahimi) is fatally shot and her petty criminal younger brother (Rawad El-Zein) is arrested and sent to prison. Antigone comes up with an audacious plan to get him out, but it backfires, leading to a controversial court case and the threat of deportation.
An urgent and thrillingly cinematic drama, in which a Greek chorus of social media mash-ups punctuates a morally complex story of loyalty, injustice and martyr-making. It’s also channelling something of Carl Theodore Dreyer’s silent classic The Passion of Joan of Arc, the crop haired Ricci tangibly conveying a turmoil of seething defiance through her expressive eyes. It’s a mesmerising, star making performance from the young performer in her first lead role.
Antigone won the award for Best Canadian Feature Film at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival and gained a Special Mention for Best International Screenplay at the 2020 Palm Springs International Film Festival.
"Deraspe earns kudos for making a 2,500-year-old play feel vital, contemporary and cinematic."